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Lyttelton Port profit rises 7.3% on record volumes

By Jane Shanahan

Thursday 28th August 2008

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Lyttelton Port increased its full-year profit by 7.3% on record volumes of cargo.

Net income rose to $10.3 million in the year ended June 30, from $9.6 million a year earlier, the company said in a statement. Revenue rose 9.2% to NZ$83 million.

Earnings growth may stall this year, reflecting weaker economic activity, the company said. New Zealand’s port industry probably can’t sustain the current number of operators in the long term and, “rationalisation is necessary”, it said.

“Much depends on the wider economic situation,” chief executive Peter Davie said. “LPC feels well positioned for continued growth but, given the challenging and somewhat unpredictable economic environment, we cannot predict at what level.”

The company’s stock was unchanged at NZ$2.30 and has declined 10% this year.

The number of containers going through the terminal, 225,335, was up 13% on last year. Total container volumes, at 250,657, were up 9.8%.

The company will pay a final dividend of 3.6 cents per share, bringing the total for the year to 5.1 cents, up 28% from a year earlier.

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